Is it time we adopt a single-stream recycling process for glass in the country?
A few years ago, CBC discovered that companies in Saskatoon and Regina admit to burying most recyclable glass in landfills. Most of the glass that homeowners washed and rinsed before recycling didn’t make it to the recycling facility. Glass can break in transit or shatter when it’s dumped for sorting. Even the ones that don’t break are stored in piles for ‘down-the-road recycling.
Here’s a look at how you can dispose of glass properly and what happens after leaving it in your blue bin.
What Is The Best Way To Dispose Of Glass?
The best way to recycle glass is to separate it before placing it on the curb or delivering it to recycling depots to ensure it is recycled correctly. You can check with your local garbage collector for specific instructions.
Can I Put Broken Glass Into The Recycling Bin?
Putting a broken jar or shard of glass into the recycling bin is hazardous to the workers who collect your recycling. It is suggested to seal it in a box or wrap it in multiple sheets of newspaper before placing it in your garbage.
“The recycling approach that the industry favours is any recycling program that results in contaminant-free recycled glass. This helps ensure that these materials are recycled into new glass containers. While the curbside collection of glass recyclables can generate high participation and large amounts of recyclables, drop-off and commercial collection programs tend to yield higher quality recovered container glass.”https://blueplanetrecycling.ca/materials-we-recycle/post-industrial-glass-recycling/
Where Does Recycled Glass Go?
You place your glass into your blue bin and don’t think much of it, right?
After you place materials and they are picked up by waste management, they will be sorted and disinfected. Some systems may include air separation systems, mechanical screenings, and metal detection.
Then it is separated by colour and sent off to local manufacturers who use the glass to make bottles or other glass-related products. It can hold most of its material compounds compared to plastic and paper. Recycled glass is substituted for up to 70% of raw materials.
Issues can arise when glass breaks before it can be sorted, and large-scale operations do not correctly utilize off-loading of glass to be reused.
Tips For Recycling Glass
Here are four tips to help you improve glass recycling.
- Before you put glass in the blue bin, consider if you can reuse it for a craft or storage. They may also be a suitable solution for bringing your jars to re-fill and bulk stores.
- Only recycle clean items. Make sure glass is spotless before recycling.
- If your municipality suggests it, ensure you sort recyclables properly. It can limit things unintentionally getting sent to the landfill.
- Drop glass off at a recycling facility or post online to see if anyone could use it.
Whether you advocate reducing, reuse, recycling, or are moving towards a zero-waste lifestyle; it’s essential to understand the process of recycling glass in the county. Even if you are a commercial business, you can invest in a baler to improve your current process.